Connect with us

Uncategorized

Tawakkul (Reliance on Allah)

Guests

Written by guest writer, Umm Yusuf.

I used to think that tawakkul was just making dua for good to happen in your life and expecting good to happen with certainty (no matter how uncertain the situation may be).  I realize now that tawakkul is also a belief in the Grand Plan of Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) and that, in the worst times of your life when you think you have been abandoned, when you are tested, tawakkul is to also believe there is good in the test that you are going through…and even that test is a mercy of Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala). Remember Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) loves you more than your mother does and, although you cannot imagine doing this, one day you will thank Him for giving you that test because through it you gained so many blessings.

“And Allah is predominant over His affair, but most of the people do not know.” Qur’an(12:20)

Support MuslimMatters for Just $2 a Month

MuslimMatters has been a free service to the community since 2007. All it takes is a small gift from a reader like you to keep us going, for just $2 / month.

The Prophet (SAW) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small. Click here to support MuslimMatters with a monthly donation of $2 per month. Set it and collect blessings from Allah (swt) for the khayr you're supporting without thinking about it.

Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) mentions this ayat to us in Surah Yusuf after Yusuf (‘alayhisalaam) is thrown down a well by his own brothers, separated from his beloved father by their envy and sold as a slave, and this is BEFORE the test of the women and prison…why?  Whereas the majority of people when placed in difficult times would lose hope in the mercy of Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) and despair and give up on making du’a we musn’t be fooled by the difficult times in our life – that things may get worse and continue to, but we have to remember Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) is completely in control of our affairs and that with this difficulty there is some ultimate benefit for us both on the day of Judgement and also in this world.

“…and it may be that you dislike a thing which is good for you and that you like a thing which is bad for you. Allah knows but you do not know.” (2:216)

Since He (subhanahu wa ta’ala) has placed us in this difficulty, He, too, will remove us from this difficulty just as in the same way as with Yusuf (‘alayhisalaam). Had Yusuf (‘alayhisalaam) not been thrown down the well by his brothers, he would not have become the financial minister of Egypt.  The day he was thrown in the well was the day that his path to blessings was made easy for him.  The blessing of becoming financial minister of Egypt, the blessing of wealth and honour and provision.  The blessing of prophethood and the blessing of Jannah. Yusuf (‘alayhisalaam) eventually saw the fruits of his patience.  Similarly, we have to have patience because the day our test began is the day our path to honour, blessings and ease had also similarly begun.

The Prophet (sallalaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) said “…“Be mindful of Allah, you will find Him in front of you. Become beloved to Allah during times of prosperity, He will know you in times of adversity. Know that what has passed you by was never to befall you. And (know that) what has befallen you was never to have passed you by. And know that victory accompanies perseverance, relief accompanies affliction and ease accompanies hardship”. (At-Tirmidhi Hadith #19 in An-Nawawi’s 40 Hadith)

Ads by Muslim Ad Network

The Arabic word “ma’” means “with” and when this word connects victory with perseverance, relief with affliction and so forth, then this means (according to explanations from scholars as explained in Zarabozo’s explanation of An-Nawawi’s 40 Hadith) is not that one follows the other after some time but that one thing follows the other very closely as if they are coming together. So as the trial starts, so does the relief – giving us comfort that whatever problems we may face, we have to be patient for a little while because the relief is also on its way.

One of the most painful experiences in life is to lose someone you love.  When this happens, sometimes the thought may enter our mind – who could be better than this person?  This was the exact thought that entered the mind of  the companion of the Prophet Muhammad (sallalaahu ‘alayhi wasallam), Umm Salamah when her husband Abu Salamah died.  She had shared so much with him and she couldn’t imagine who could be better than this man.

Umm Salamah narrated that the Prophet (sallalaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: “There is no Muslim that is afflicted with a calamity, and he says what Allah has commanded him to say: “To Allah we belong and to him we will return! O Allah! Give me the rewards (of being patient over) this calamity, and grant me something better than it to replace it,” except that Allah will give him something better to replace it.”

 Umm Salamah said “So when (my husband) Abu Salamah died, I said this du’a, but could not help thinking, “Who is better than Abu Salamah (i.e. no one can replace Abu Salamah)?” Then the Prophet (sallalaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) himself sent me a messenger proposing to me, so Allah blessed me with someone better than Abu Salamah” (Muslim, Abu Dawud, At-Tirmidhi).

And who did Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) replace Abu Salamah with?  Someone who was so much better than him in worldly status and in the status of the akhirah – Muhammad, the Messenger of Allah (sallalaahu ‘alayhi wasallam). Prophet Muhammad (sallalaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) approached her. She didn’t have to get his attention or compromise her faith or herself for him.  He came to her even though she was old, widowed with children and he accepted her even though she admitted to having character deficiencies.  And had Umm Salamah not gone through the pain of losing Abu Salamah, she would never have had the honour of being the wife of the final Messenger of Allah (sallalaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) in this world or the next.

When we face difficulties  or we lose something, and we equally say the above mentioned du’a and have patience, insha’Allah, whatever we have lost, Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) will compensate us in this world and the next with that which is abundantly better. When we experience that blessing we will thank Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) for taking us through that test and we will understand that we were never abandoned, our dua’s were heard (every single one of them) and Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) was always in control of our affairs.

Support Our Dawah for Just $2 a Month

MuslimMatters has been a free service to the community since 2007. All it takes is a small gift from a reader like you to keep us going, for just $2 / month.

The Prophet (SAW) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small. Click here to support MuslimMatters with a monthly donation of $2 per month. Set it and collect blessings from Allah (swt) for the khayr you're supporting without thinking about it.

13 Comments

13 Comments

  1. Avatar

    troubled

    May 10, 2011 at 9:33 AM

    i am going through a crisis of faith at the moment. my iman has been week for quite a while and i thought an umrah trip would be the tonic. My father went with me and unfortunately fell so ill i thought he was going to die. It was the worse week of my life. I appreciate it was a test from Allah but I know I failed. i lost trust in allah whilst i was there and afterwards. I continue to believe in allah but am having trouble accepting Islam completely. i am troubled.

    • Avatar

      Amman Abdul Adl

      May 11, 2011 at 11:46 PM

      Salaam “Troubled”,

      Even though you’ve mentioned a particular situation, I could only give you some general advice. I have been through whatever you are feeling, and Alhumdulillah i’m slowly getting out of it. If you want to know details then also read this thread:

      We lose faith in Allah (SWT). Our faith is at a complete low and then we start questioning it. You’re reading articles and listening to lectures and still nothing is happening to you. We tell ourselves that we have given up everything for this religion and nothing good is coming out of it. But are we really giving our 100%? Its a serious question to ask.

      Think about other things you did in your life. Whenever we are in this situation, it is a time of reflection. And yes it is a cliche statement, “But things happen for a reason”. Maybe Allah (SWT) wants you to acknowledge something yourself that you are heedless of. All the things you’ve said and done. Allah (SWT) is testing you. But like all test we take in our lives, don’t we come out learning something new? How well or not we knew the subject being tested. And brother (or sister), if you failed then know that Allah (SWT) will always be ready to give you a “make up” exam. Allah (swt) does give up on anyone until he/she gives up on Him.

      I really hope this helps…

      Allah Knows Best

    • Avatar

      Aadish

      May 13, 2016 at 11:59 AM

      Dear troubled,
      Do dua to Allah to strengthen your imaan and to remove all your doubts.

  2. Avatar

    Aalia

    May 10, 2011 at 2:46 PM

    Excellent article, mashallah. Highly appreciated

  3. Avatar

    Ayesha

    May 10, 2011 at 3:21 PM

    BarakAllahufeeki sister…amazing post!!…jazakAllahukhairan

  4. Avatar

    Mariam E.

    May 11, 2011 at 10:55 AM

    Asalamu Alikum

    Great article, jazaki Allah khayr.

    Some nice poetry on tawakul:

    :توكلت في رزقي على الله خالقي *وأيقنت أن الله لا شك رازقي

    وما يكون من رزقي فليس يفوتني *ولو كان في قاع البحار العوامق

    سيأتي به الله العظيم بفضله *ولو لم يكن مني اللسان بناطق

    ففي أي شيء تذهب النفس حسرة *وقد قسم الرحمن رزق الخلائق

    For my sustenance, In my Creator I relied …… Certain, without doubt that He would grant me

    And what is of my rizq, shall not pass me ……. Even if it lay in the depth of the seas

    Allah, by His Grace, will bring it ……. Even if my tongue does not speak

    So, for what reason should the soul distress …..If the creation’s sustenance is upon the Most Merciful

  5. Avatar

    SabrunJameel

    May 11, 2011 at 12:53 PM

    Barakallahu feeki

  6. Avatar

    Someone

    May 16, 2011 at 9:41 PM

    This was ABSOLUTELY BRILLIANT. Jazakallu khayr for sharing this. It made my day :) and it was an extremely beneficial reminder!

  7. Avatar

    Citrine

    October 28, 2012 at 5:19 AM

    my brothers and sisters,
    The article is good and understandable.
    There are many people who are like me a born Muslim, Alhamdillillah, but I feel I am not good practicing muslim. It does not mean that my Iman has got weak, no not at all, my faith and Iman on Allah is highly steadfast, alhamdullillah. But the pains that are given as tests to me from Allah, I feel that I do not accept and fulfill it whole heartly, I complaint over every single pain that O Allah why me? what have I done? I never hurt people, I offer salah` , recite Quran, why me? Why not those people who totally do not listen to your commands and still they are happy, what they want they get it.., WHy me.. I cry, make dua , do appeals to Allah for his forgiveness but I feel that He is so angry to me or he is testing me. I then, sometimes, feel so deprived, so empty that nobody can understand my condition. Relaince on Allah is there but I think patience is not there which is the most important part of Tawakul. How can I convert my restless and anxious soul to a patient soul? I want peace in my heart and soul.

  8. Avatar

    Ameerah

    August 29, 2014 at 3:51 PM

    This was truly amazing…..masha’Allah! Thanks for sharing it with us, Jazak Allahu Khayran! Theres a couple things I wanted to point out though…..we do not know Allah’s Plan and I don’t think we should say things like “if this did not happen then that would not have happened”. i think we should say that it “may not” have happened….because the same things could have happened in ANOTHER way. Do you get what i’m saying? For example….you said:

    “Had Yusuf (‘alayhisalaam) not been thrown down the well by his brothers, he would not have become the financial minister of Egypt.”

    Well, perhaps he STILL would have become the financial minister of Egypt, through another route.

    Another thing you also said:
    “And had Umm Salamah not gone through the pain of losing Abu Salamah, she would never have had the honour of being the wife of the final Messenger of Allah (sallalaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) in this world or the next.”

    You said “would never have had” i don’t think you should use such words, instead you should say “she may not have had”.

    Do let me know what you think, if you agree or not. Or support with any evidence. So that I can also be aware of whether or not to say such things is alright or not. Thank you!

    And thanks again for sharing the article!

  9. Avatar

    Ameerah

    August 29, 2014 at 4:03 PM

    Some more suggestions:

    Perhaps you can add in these few ayat from the Quran.

    From Surah Al-Imran, translated by Muhsin Khan:

    3:156
    O you who believe! Be not like those who disbelieve (hypocrites) and who say to their brethren when they travel through the earth or go out to fight: “If they had stayed with us, they would not have died or been killed,” so that Allah may make it a cause of regret in their hearts. It is Allah that gives life and causes death. And Allah is All-Seer of what you do.

    3:159
    And by the Mercy of Allah, you dealt with them gently. And had you been severe and harsh-hearted, they would have broken away from about you; so pass over (their faults), and ask (Allah’s) Forgiveness for them; and consult them in the affairs. Then when you have taken a decision, put your trust in Allah, certainly, Allah loves those who put their trust (in Him).

    3:160
    If Allah helps you, none can overcome you; and if He forsakes you, who is there after Him that can help you? And in Allah (Alone) let believers put their trust.

  10. Avatar

    Zahira

    April 6, 2016 at 8:22 PM

    Praise and thanks be to ALLAH…

  11. Avatar

    MR B

    October 4, 2016 at 1:52 PM

    I had been committing vices for over 15 years ….and I used to give sadaqa pray fast umrah etc but still had the vices on and off. Always having the thought one day ill stop n change. when I got arrested my sin was no more hidden. I realised that Allah wanted me to stop on his terms and not on my own. Prison opened my eyes to All the blessings Allah had provided to which I took for granted, all through life there was signs n times to have turned back. Test n trials and loses brought me closer to Allah. When u reach rock bottom there is only one way out. …
    Man is in either in state of shukar(apprecation) or Sabr (apprecation) I’d rather be in the state of Shukar and obey his laws and try hard not to sin. APPRECIATE what u do have. Dnt wait to hit rock bottom

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Uncategorized

Torment And Tears: The Emotional Experience of Tawbah

Have you ever had that moment where, all of a sudden, you remember something that you said or did in the past, the severity of which you only realized later on?

That sharp inhalation, shortness of breath, the flush of humiliation, the sick lurching in the pit of your stomach as you recall hurtful words, or an action that was so clearly displeasing to Allah… it is a very physical reaction, a recoiling from your own past deeds.

It may not even be the first time you think about those actions, it may not even be the first time to make istighfaar because of them… but sometimes, it may be the first time that you really and truly feel absolutely sickened at the realization of the gravity of it all. It might not even have been a ‘big deal’ – perhaps it was a cruel joke to a sensitive friend, or not having fulfilled a promise that was important to someone, or betraying a secret that you didn’t think was all that serious.

Support MuslimMatters for Just $2 a Month

MuslimMatters has been a free service to the community since 2007. All it takes is a small gift from a reader like you to keep us going, for just $2 / month.

The Prophet (SAW) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small. Click here to support MuslimMatters with a monthly donation of $2 per month. Set it and collect blessings from Allah (swt) for the khayr you're supporting without thinking about it.

And yet… and yet, at this moment, your memory of that action is stark and gut-wrenching.

It is a deeply unpleasant feeling.

It is also a very necessary one.

Ads by Muslim Ad Network

The Act of Tawbah

Tawbah – seeking forgiveness from Allah – is something that we speak about, especially in Ramadan, the month of forgiveness. However, it is also something that we tend to speak about in general terms, or write off as something simple – “Just say astaghfirAllah and don’t do it again.”

In truth, tawbah is about much more than muttering istighfaar under your breath. It is a process, an emotional experience, one that engages your memory, your soul, and your entire body.

The first step of tawbah is to recognize the sin – whether seemingly small or severe – and to understand just how wrong it was. Each and every one of our deeds is written in our book of deeds; each and every deed will be presented to us on the Day of Judgment for us to be held accountable for. There are times when we say things so casually that it doesn’t even register to us how we could be affecting the person we’ve spoken to.

As RasulAllah ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) once told A’ishah raḍyAllāhu 'anha (may Allāh be pleased with her),

“You have said a word which would change the sea (i.e. poison or contaminate it) if it were mixed in it.” (Sunan Abi Dawud)

The second step is to feel true remorse. It’s not enough to rationally acknowledge that action as being sinful; one must feel guilt, remorse, and grief over having committed it.

Tawbah is to feel that sucker-punch of humiliation and guilt as we recall our sins: not just the mildly awkward ones, like a petty fib or mild infraction, but the genuinely terrible parts of ourselves… ugly lies, vicious jealousy, violations against others’ rights, abuse.

Some of us may be actual criminals – others of us may seem presentable on the outside, even religious, maybe even spiritual… and yet have violated others in terrible ways. Abuse comes in so many forms, and some of us are perpetrators, not just victims.

Facing that reality can be a gruesome process. 

It is a necessary process. Token words, glib recitation of spiritual formulae, those do not constitute tawbah in its entirety. Rather, it is a matter of owning up to our violations, experiencing genuine emotion over them – true humiliation, true regret – and striving not to be that person ever again. 

Much as we hate to admit it, we have our own fair share of red flags that we create and wave, even before we get into the nasty business of committing the worst of our sins. Tawbah isn’t just feeling bad for those Big Sins – it’s to recognize what led us to them to begin with.

It requires us to acknowledge our own flaws of character, of the ease with which we fall into certain behaviours, the way we justify the pursuit of our desires, the blindness we have to the worst parts of ourselves. Tawbah is to sit down and face all of it – and then to beg Allah, over and over, not just to forgive us and erase those specific actions, but to change us for the better. 

This experience is so much more powerful than a mere “I’m sorry,” or “omg, that was awful”; it is an act that embodies our submission to Allah because it requires us to make ourselves incredibly emotionally vulnerable, and in that moment, to experience a deep pain and acknowledge our wrongdoing. It is to hold your heart out to Allah and to beg Him, with every fiber of your being, with tears in your eyes, with a lump in your throat, wracked with regret, to please, please, please forgive you – because without it, without His Mercy and His Forgiveness and His Gentleness and His Love towards us, we have no hope and we will be utterly destroyed.

Surah Araf Verse 23

{Rabbanaa thalamnaa anfusanaa, wa illam taghfir lanaa wa tar’hamnaa, lanakunanna mina’l Khaasireen!}

{Our Lord, we have wronged ourselves, and if You do not forgive us and have mercy upon us, we will surely be among the losers!} (Qur’an 7:23)

This experience of tawbah is powerful, emotional, and heartbreaking. It is meant to be. It is a reminder to us of how truly dependent we are upon our Lord and our Creator, how nothing else in our lives can give us joy or a sense of peace if He is displeased with us. It is a reminder to us of how deeply we crave His Love, of how desperately we need it, of how His Pleasure is the ultimate goal of our existence.

Finally, there is the step of resolving never to commit that sin again, to redress the wrongs if possible, and to follow up the bad deed with a good one.

The vow is one we make to ourselves, asking Allah’s help to uphold it – because we are incapable of doing anything at all without His Permission; the righting of wrongs is what we do to correct our transgression against others’ rights over us, although there are times when we may well be unable to seek another individual’s forgiveness, whether because of distance, death, or otherwise; and the good deeds to undertake as penance are numerous, whether they be sadaqah or increased ‘ebaadah.

But it doesn’t end there. And it never will.

Tawbah is not a once-in-a-lifetime event. It is not even a once-a-year event, or once a month, or once a week. It is meant to be a daily experience, a repeated occurrence, in the earliest hours of the morning, in the depths of the last third of the night, during your lunch break or your daily commute or in the middle of a social gathering.

Tawbah is a lifelong journey, for who amongst us doesn’t commit mistakes and errors every day?

All we can do is beg of Allah not only for His Forgiveness, but also: {Allahumma ij’alnaa min at-tawwaabeen.} – O Allah, make us amongst those who are constantly engaging in repentance!

Support Our Dawah for Just $2 a Month

MuslimMatters has been a free service to the community since 2007. All it takes is a small gift from a reader like you to keep us going, for just $2 / month.

The Prophet (SAW) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small. Click here to support MuslimMatters with a monthly donation of $2 per month. Set it and collect blessings from Allah (swt) for the khayr you're supporting without thinking about it.

Continue Reading

#Islam

Moonsighting Gone Wrong, Again.

Moonsighting is just not working out.

Atleast not for our community here in the Toronto area. As I speak to my friends in other large (read: fragmented) communities, such as those in the UK, I hear similar tales of confusion, anxiety and horror. The problem in these communities stems from the fact that there are numerous moonsighting organizations in the same area, all following different methodologies for declaring Eid and Ramadan. This naturally results in a catastrophe and Muslims from the same family living in the same city are forced to celebrate the holidays on different days.

To give you a taste of how (and why) things went wrong in this year’s Ramadan declaration, here’s a summary highlighting the series of events as they unfolded. (Reminder: Ramadan was expected to start on Friday, April 24th or Saturday, April 25th 2020 in North America)

  • Wednesday, April 22, 10: 13 pm EST: Crescent Council of Canada (CC) declares Ramadan to start on Friday, 24th April based on the fact that it received no reports of moonsighting sighting on Wednesday night. This committee follows global moonsighting and it declared Ramadan so early because it was already the 29th of Shaban based on the lunar calendar it follows (for most of North America, the 29th of Shaban was to be on Thursday). So, starting Ramadan on Saturday was simply not an option for the group (as it would have meant observing 31 days of Shaban). Also to note is that this group gives precedence to official declarations from authorities from Muslim-majority countries, even if these declarations conflict predictions of visibility charts and astronomical calculations. It argues that testimony of witnesses takes precedence in the sharia over astronomical data.
  • Thursday, April 23rd, 7:27 pm EST : The Hilal Council of Canada (HC), another committee in the area that follows global sighting, states that there has not been any sighting of the moon in any country, including South and Central America (it is past sunset in most of the Muslim world by now). The committee decides that it will wait till sundown in California to receive the final reports before making a declaration. Confusion starts spreading in the community as one organization has already declared Ramadan while another claims no one in the Muslim world saw the moon. Note that HC does not accept moonsighting reports if they contradict astronomical data.
  • 8:39 pm: Confusion continues. The CC claims that Saudi Arabia, UAE, Malaysia, Turkey and a host of Muslim countries have declared Ramadan. The committee thus feels validated in its original declaration which it made on Wednesday night.
  • 8:48 pm: More confusion: California-based CrescentWatch.org also claims that moonsighting reports from the Middle-East and Africa are all negative. People naturally start wondering how so many countries supposedly declared Ramadan if there were no positive sightings.
  • 9:40 pm: The Hilal Committee of Toronto and Vicinity, the oldest moonsighting group in the city, declares Ramadan to start on Saturday the 25th of April. Since the committee did not receive any positive reports by sunset from areas in its jurisdiction, it declared Ramadan to commence on Saturday. This committee follows local moonsighting and doesn’t rely on reports from the Muslim-world. Two of the three major moonsighting groups in the city have declared Ramadan on different days at this time. Residents are confused whether to fast the next day or pray tarweeh as its almost Isha time.
  • 11:11 pm: The HC finally declares Ramadan to start the next day, i.e. Friday, based on confirmed reports from California. Mosques following the HC advice to pray tarawih – an hour after Isha time had already entered. After an anxiety filled and frustrating evening, residents finally know the positions of the various moonsighting groups in the city. Now they just have to decide which one to follow!
Support MuslimMatters for Just $2 a Month

MuslimMatters has been a free service to the community since 2007. All it takes is a small gift from a reader like you to keep us going, for just $2 / month.

The Prophet (SAW) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small. Click here to support MuslimMatters with a monthly donation of $2 per month. Set it and collect blessings from Allah (swt) for the khayr you're supporting without thinking about it.

This baffling circus of contradictory declarations is nothing new; it has become a yearly occurrence. Last year we saw the exact same series of events unfold and the same confusion spread throughout the community; it is entirely expected that the same will happen again in future years.

Our leadership has decided that it is acceptable to put the average Muslim through this nerve-racking experience every year. For Eid declarations, the experience is far worse as thousands are often waiting till midnight to decide whether to go work the next day or send their children to school. The stress and anxiety this decision causes for the average person year after year is simply unacceptable.

Popular advice in these situations has been to ‘follow your local masjid’. However, this idea is impractical for large communities where there are numerous local mosques, all following various opinions. It is also impractical for the thousands who simply don’t frequent the mosque and are not tied to a particular organization. The layperson just wants to know the dates for Ramadan and Eid; it is an undue burden on them to research the strength of various legal opinions just to know when to celebrate a religious holiday with their families.

Ads by Muslim Ad Network

Only one way forward: astronomical calculations

There have been numerous sincere attempts to solve these long-standing problems associated with moonsighting over the past 50 years – all have failed. I have documented in detail these attempts, the reasons for their failure and argued for the only viable solution to this problem: astronomical calculations.

Since its introduction in 2006, Fiqh Council of North America’s calculations-based lunar calendar has proven to be the definitive solution for communities struggling to resolve the yearly moonsighting debacle. An example of such a resolution is the 2015 agreement by some of the leading mosques in the Chicago area who put aside their differences and united behind FCNA’s calendar. This approach has brought ease and facilitation for the religious practice of thousands of Muslims in that community.

While the use of calculations has been a minority position in Islam’s legal history, it has a sound basis in the shariah [1] and has been supported by towering figures of the past such as Imam Zakariya al-Ansari and Imam Ramli. Given the challenging circumstances we find ourselves in now, it is incumbent on scholars of today to revisit this position as a means of providing much needed relief to the masses from this lunar quagmire.

References:

[1]  From SeekersGuidance: Scholars upholding this can be traced all the way back to the first Islamic century. The textual basis for this opinion is the hadith narrated by al-Bukhari, “When you see it [the new moon of Ramadan] then fast; and when you see it [the new moon of Shawwal], then break the fast. If it is hidden from you (ghumma ‘alaykum) [i.e. if the sky is overcast] then estimate it (fa-qdiru lahu);” (al-Bukhari, hadith no. 1900). The last verb, fa-qdiru, can be validly understood to mean calculation. Of the scholars who held this, are Abu al-‘Abbas b. Surayj (d. 306/918), one of the leading founders of the classical Shafi‘i school, the Shafi‘i scholar and renowned mystic Abu al-Qasim al-Qushayri (d. 465/1072), the leading Shafi‘i judge Taqi al-Din al-Subki (d. 756/1355), the Shafi‘i legal theorist al-Zarkashi (d. 794/1392), the renowned Maliki legal theorist al-Qarafi (d. 684/1285), and some Hanafi scholars. The late Shafi‘i commentator al-Qalyubi (d. 1069/1659) held that all sighting-claims must be rejected if calculations show that a sighting was impossible, stating, “This is manifestly obvious. In such a case, a person may not fast. Opposing this is obstinacy and stubbornness.” See al-Mawsu‘ah al-fiqhiyyah al-kuwaytiyyah, c.v. “Ru’yat al-hilal,” vol. 22, pp. 31-4. The leading scholar of the late Shāfi‘ī school Muhammad al-Ramli (d. 1004/1596) held that the expert astronomer was obliged to follow his own calculation as was the non-astronomer who believed him; this position has been used by some contemporary Shafi’i scholars to state that in the modern world, with its precise calculations, the strongest opinion of the Shafi’i school should be that everyone must follow calculations; see ‘Umar b. al-Habib al-Husayni, Fath al-‘ali fi jam‘ al-khilaf bayna Ibn Hajar wa-Ibn al-Ramli, ed. Shifa’ Hitu (Jeddah: Dar al-Minhaj, 2010), pp. 819-22. See also the fatwa of the Hanafi scholar Dr Salah Abu al-Hajj (http://www.anwarcenter.com/fatwa/معنى-حديث-لا-تصوموا-حتى-تروا-الهلال-ول) last accessed 9/5/2016) which states, after arguing against relying on calculations, “However, the position of [following] calculations is the position of a considerable group of jurists, so it is a respected disagreement in Islamic law, whereby, if a state were to adopt it, it is not rejected, because the judgment of a judge removes disagreement, and the adoption of a state is [as] the judgment of a judge.

Support Our Dawah for Just $2 a Month

MuslimMatters has been a free service to the community since 2007. All it takes is a small gift from a reader like you to keep us going, for just $2 / month.

The Prophet (SAW) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small. Click here to support MuslimMatters with a monthly donation of $2 per month. Set it and collect blessings from Allah (swt) for the khayr you're supporting without thinking about it.

Continue Reading

#Current Affairs

COVID19: Calling The Conscientious

Violating borders, scaling every wall and traveling faster than a rumor, COVID19 is now around nearly everywhere. It has reduced nations and societies, low and mighty, to their knees, demoted all preoccupations to insignificance and is threatening to torch everyone in its path.

The imperial hubris of nations, with and without nuclear weapons has crumbled. Mighty militaries have been reduced to mere spectators. Borders are closed. Markets have tumbled. Even the gods amongst humans – rulers, monarchs, dictators, religious heads, generals, billionaires, movie stars, icons of sports and music –have been forced to recede from the limelight. Neither they are in control nor can they perform. All of them are forced to surrender by an unseen microscopic speck with an insatiable appetite to devour humankind, bit-by-bit, part by part.

A pre-COVID19 world is now a blurred memory. It was not long ago that we were a different planet and a different people. Neither hand-sanitizers nor masks were precious enough to purchase let alone hoard, or even think about. YouTube was popular but not so much for videos on how to wash hands or what to do when self-quarantined. And, shaking hands were a norm and we used to respond with a “bless you” to our neighbor’s cough or sneeze.

Support MuslimMatters for Just $2 a Month

MuslimMatters has been a free service to the community since 2007. All it takes is a small gift from a reader like you to keep us going, for just $2 / month.

The Prophet (SAW) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small. Click here to support MuslimMatters with a monthly donation of $2 per month. Set it and collect blessings from Allah (swt) for the khayr you're supporting without thinking about it.

That was pre-COVID19.

Places of worship are already shut down and airports, train stations and shipping ports are shutting down. Boulevards and avenues are eerily silent. Shopping malls and theaters stand abandoned.

This is post-COVID19.

Ads by Muslim Ad Network

Yet, there are flashes of hope and inspiration. Medical professionals and health care workers are fighting to save mankind, a patient a time. Our ill equipped and fatigued hospitals are abodes of our new heroes and true patriots. And no less are trash collectors, grocery workers, truck drivers, postal workers, fruit pickers among others whom we took for granted all along.

Covid-19 is not just the biggest story of our time, it is the only story.

Amidst a piercing cacophony of politicians’ press conferences and public interest advisories, we cannot afford to miss out the soft whispers of COVID19.

It is telling us to pay more attention to the under-estimated meaningful over the hyper-marketed mundane. Its whispers remind us to remember that we are but a mere mortal. We are reminded in the Quran that God made us from a mere speck (40:67).

Not, too long ago, we seldom had to remind ourselves that we are human. Not too long ago we could afford to be enemies of ourselves. Humans were enemies of humans, fighting and taking life of those considered ‘others’. We fostered division … “them” and “us,” “citizens” and “illegals.” COVID19 has spoken: no more. We stoked exclusion … “black, brown and white,” “conservative and liberal,” and “urban and rural.” COVID19 has spoken: no more.

In its sweeping trail of destruction, COVID19, is imploring us — harness my power to cause dread in each one of you, across borders, across genders, across races — and unite. COVID19 is challenging us: find a common cause against me. When any of you find an antidote against me, may that be a reason for your coming together, even if right now I have forced you to stay away from each other – six feet part.

COVID19 is an equal opportunity and a non-discriminating enemy, which will kill no matter how we worship, what we eat, where we live. One touch strikes all with equal precision.

Today, as we face an existential threat from a mortal molecular foe, we must remind ourselves about what matters most, our humanity and not our race and nationality.

The truth is that long before COVID19 struck us, we were sick. We spread viruses; hate and bigotry, we held thoughts of xenophobia for those who did not deserve it. We wallowed in bias and built echo chambers. COVID19 exposed all of our pre-COVID19 shortcomings.

Coronavirus will kill us for a while, but then in the end, we will overpower it. But before that happens, all the human deaths would be in vain if we don’t realize that in a world of such threats, we never needed to have been at each other’s throats.

In fear and panic, people resort to extreme behavior, it amazes us with their capacity for wisdom and kindness, or stupidity and cruelty. COVID19 is beseeching us to reclaim and regain our humanity of compassion and kindness. It is telling us to come together to fight our common battles. It is forcing us to wash our hands of all sins of our past and then lock our hearts and hands and build a world where meaning must matter more than the mundane.

Support Our Dawah for Just $2 a Month

MuslimMatters has been a free service to the community since 2007. All it takes is a small gift from a reader like you to keep us going, for just $2 / month.

The Prophet (SAW) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small. Click here to support MuslimMatters with a monthly donation of $2 per month. Set it and collect blessings from Allah (swt) for the khayr you're supporting without thinking about it.

Continue Reading
.
.
.
.

MuslimMatters NewsLetter in Your Inbox

Sign up below to get started

.
Ads by Muslim Ad Network
.
.
Ads by Muslim Ad Network
.

Trending